Coming Down to the Wire

With a diocesan clergy conference, confirmations, high school graduation, and school awards ceremony this week (and all that I had to do to get ready for the upcoming tour!) I just never got around to posting a newsletter yesterday! Here you are in all its glory!

The Eastern Church has its own Saints

Last Sunday, many Eastern Churches celebrated Easter, a week after the Western Church. Over the years, our growing traditions have meant that we can’t even celebrate major feasts on the same date. And it got me thinking: what holy men and women have they had over the past 1000 years that we are completely unaware of. Here are five saints we should know about as Western Christians.

The REAL Pope of Division

A few weeks ago, I made a video about how some believe pope Francis to be confusing and divisive. This week, we look at a (fictional) pope that is actually that in the HBO series The Young Pope.

Chevy Chase at his most Ryan Reynolds

When I describe to you an actor who is sarcastic to a fault, even in the face of danger, people of today might point immediately to Ryan Reynolds. Not in 1985. That shtick was wholly owned by another man, Chevy Chase. In watching Fletch this week, Fr. Tito and I couldn’t help but laugh at how similar Reynold’s performance would have been.

17 days!

Can you believe it? After 8 years of thinking about it and six months of actively planning, our trip is almost here. According to one Twitter follower, the t-shirts have been shipped out (I haven’t received our large order yet, but hopefully soon! And, based on this picture, I’m hoping that the image is actually centered and aligned correctly…)

Schedule Updates

Over the past few weeks we’ve had to update our schedule for one reason or another. Because of that, we had has to cancel our speaking engagements in Baltimore, MD and Poway, CA, move our talk in Boston (still being determined), and added a talk in New York (St. Francis 31st Street.)

Below you will find the most up-to-date list of stops.

Hope everyone has a great week!

Peace and good,

Fr. Casey

A Dive into the Absurd

This week, for whatever reason, everything at Breaking in the Habit focuses on what not to do in order to teach what to do. There is the ridiculously funny, the judgmental, the cringy, and the downright wrong. Hope you enjoy!

Biblical Stories… taken WAY too Literally

Since the 19th century, there have been Christians that demand that every word of the Bible is meant to be taken literally, at face value. This is obviously problematic on theological terms. But it also problematic on mundane, practical terms as well, which is what Adrian Bliss shows in his silly TikToks.

Disgusted at… Learning?

Sometimes the absurdity is a little closer to home: ourselves. In this weeks’ reflection, I recognize a habit in myself to look down on those for simply being at a different stage of life than me. What the world needs is a little more patience.

A Difficult Movie to Watch Today

If you saw the movie Willow as a child, I can see why you would love it. It’s adventurous, magical, and silly, things that kids love to watch. This is why Fr. Tito loves it. If you were an adult in 2022 when you first watched this movie, like I was, you might not have the same reaction. For me, it was unoriginal, outdated, and really cringy. You can be the judge, but it’s a great example of how context influences our love for art.

DO NOT DO THIS

Distributing communion should be one of the greatest joys of any priest’s life. I mean, it’s the body of Christ. And yet, it can be an awkward, depressing experience when you see irreverent, uncatechized people receiving the Eucharist. Sometimes, you just have to make an absurd TikTok to teach people how it should go…

@caseyofm

Good advice for the communion line #Catholic #funny

♬ Funny – MaxRazumov

T Minus 26 Days

Well that was a little terrifying to write… Only 26 days until Fr. Tito and I leave for our round-the-country tour! Whoa. After 8 years of dreaming, it’s almost here. We hope that you can join us along the way! Our calendar is pretty set at this point, just looking to finalize a few more venues. Be sure to check our calendar at the bottom of the page for the most up-to-date information.

Play Ball!

Fr. Casey

Holy Week, Holy Questions

Today we find ourselves in silence. Having entered into the Paschal Mystery Thursday, the Christian world finds itself reeling at the death of Jesus, stunned at the loss. Saturday is a quiet day of contemplation as we mourn the loss of our Lord, pondering questions of life and death. Questions like…

Why do bad things happen?

The hit show Scrubs was a master at blending slapstick comedy with gut wrenching drama. In this episode, two characters debate whether there is rationality in the universe and why bad things happen.

How do we save a dying Church?

Two years ago yesterday, I posed a video called Saving a Dying, Shrinking Church, suggesting what I believed to be the answer to the Church’s problems in the west. Looking back on it, the video was insufficient. It was vague. It was filled with platitudes. I still strongly believe in the essential message, but it needed more. And so, this week’s video:

How do we break the cycle of sin?

When people think of sin, they mostly think of individual choices. There is this notion that we are entirely free to do what is good but sometimes we choice the bad. I’m not so sure this is ever the case. While we do have free will, to some extent, we are also the products of our environment. We live in a world where sin is all around us, forming us, directing us, weakening us. The sins of others have an effect on us, if in no other way than to normalize sin. Sin is personal, yes, but it is also social, hereditary, and cyclical. We need not just turn from sin ourselves, we must break the cycle for future generations.

This is what I believe Cloud Atlas shows us. Although secular in nature, the film bears many Christians themes and is one of the most beautiful, inspiring movies I’ve ever seen.

And finally, why does food look so good when fasting?

Alright, maybe not the most important of questions, but worth asking nonetheless! Happy fasting! (The Church requires universal fasting on Good Friday but encourages that fast to continue all the way through the Easter Vigil.)

@caseyofm

The paschal fast has begun! I hope your Good Friday is holy and life-giving! #goodfriday #catholic #humor

♬ original sound – caseyofm

I hope everyone takes some time today for quiet reflection and that your Easter is a blessed one!

Peace and good,

Fr. Casey

There’s Still Time!

Just one week left until Easter, many might be thinking that Lent is over (and it wasn’t as fruitful as we had hoped.) But that’s not true. Even if the first 38 days of Lent has left you just where you started, there is still one week to put some work in. Don’t give up, and don’t miss this wonderful opportunity of Holy Week.

From Grifter to Grateful

When you think of sleazy, traveling preachers, you probably don’t think of Steve Martin. And yet, in 1992, he starred in the movie Leap of Faith as a preacher that was more showman than holy man. He spends his whole life grifting people out of their money until one day he has a true experience of faith.

Ghost Story, with a Twist!

When you hear the name Ichabod, chances are your immediate thought is The Legend of Sleepy Hallow. It’s a name synonymous with the story of the headless horseman. While the original legend may have found itself in last season’s “iconic” theme, the 1999 movie version with Johnny Depp has been all but forgotten. This week, we want to revive it.

Just two weeks left to order!

Looking for the latest fashion from two guys who wear the same thing every day? Click the picture below to order your own limited edition Bleacher Brothers t-shirt. They will be on sale for another 13 days and then they won’t be available online ever again! Seriously.

Stickers are here!

Yesterday, a box of stickers arrived weighing 58 pounds. Yes, I may have over ordered… but that’s good news for you! I’m happy to send you one in the mail for free, just fill out this form (and follow the instructions. It’s amazing how many people last week did exactly what I asked people not to! It’s a small detail, but it makes my life a lot easier!)

Happy Holy Week!

By the time most of you read this it will be Holy Week, and so I hope you have a wonderful, holy, solemn time meditating on the Paschal Mystery.

Peace and good,

Fr. Casey

Let’s Get in Touch!

Let’s be honest: our world was disconnected before COVID. It’s time we connected again with each other and our inner selves!

Getting in Touch with Your Inner Cool

In 47 days, Fr. Tito and I will embark on the greatest quest known to man: a nationwide tour to attend a game in every MLB stadium. Our goal is to meet people where they are to invite them back to life of faith. You could say that we’re on a mission from God. Naturally, we decided to call ourselves the Bleacher Brothers.

I know, I know, that’s the coolest image you’ve ever seen and you’re uncontrollably jealous right now. Well, let go of that jealousy because that image is for you. Yesterday I ordered 10,000 stickers and we plan to give them out all summer. But because you’re subscribed to this newsletter, I’ve decided to give you a head start. If you click here and fill out this form, I’ll send you a sticker in the next couple of weeks.

But wait, there’s MORE!

Stickers are cool, but t-shirts are COOLER. Because we really want to get the word out about our tour, we’ve designed these t-shirts for your purchase. You can find them here, and they’re arrive in early May. The cost is $13.22, plus shipping, coming to a total of $20. We’re sorry we couldn’t subsidize the cost, but they’re being given to you at cost. (Technically Fr. Tito and I lowered the price by agreeing to order 500 of them, so we’re on the hook for that many regardless of how many sell.)

Getting in Touch with Your Brokenness

And back to reality. Talk about a transition. As excited as we may be for our trip, there is a lot of work to do before hand. Sort of like the relationship between Easter and Lent. The joy of Easter means nothing without the conversion of Lent. For that reason, it’s important that we look to ourselves, in our brokenness, to know what Jesus needs to heal in the first place.

Getting in Touch with Your Cringe!

If that’s a little too heavy for you right now, how about this uncomfortable mess?! This week on Upon Friar Review, Fr. Patrick and I discuss the cringiest things that Christians have posted online. Be warned: it’s tough to watch!

Getting in Touch with Your… Trauma?

You’ve no doubt seen movies with ambiguous endings. You’ve probably seen movies where the main character’s sanity is in question. But what about a movie where the main character claims to be an alien… and he’s pretty convincing? Let us introduce you to K-PAX, the mostly overlooked gem of a movie that, if nothing else, will leave you thinking, “I’ve never seen a movie quite like that.” To be honest, it’s not the greatest and there are definitely some problems with it, but we think it’s worth a watch.

Getting in Touch with Jesus

I know that most of you are not local, but for anyone in the Middle Georgia area, I will be giving a parish mission this week, Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday at Holy Spirit Catholic Church in Macon, GA. The topic is the Beatitudes. We hope that you’re join us at 7pm each night, and then for a penance service on Thursday.

Almost There!

Easter is almost here. I hope everyone has a good final few weeks of Lent!

Peace and good,

Fr. Casey